Tahira: Echoes of the Astral Empire, a Kickstarter-funded tactical turn-based RPG from Whale Hammer Games, releases today for Windows, Mac and Linux via Steam, GOG and the Humble Store.
Echoes of the Astral Empire follows the 20-year-old princess, Tahira, as she fights to save her peaceful people from extermination at the hands of the genocidal Astral Empire. The struggle takes place on an abandoned colony world consumed by a medieval dark age.
Princess Tahira leads up to 20 characters through massive battles against much larger forces. Her people rely on guerrilla warfare tactics, utilizing the terrain to push enemies off cliffs, and stealth to plan brutal ambushes to gain the upper hand.
Every battle is crucial to the plot; there are no filler bouts serving as irrelevant opportunities to grind and level up. Fights progress in expansive environments and often include multiple sections ranging from three-stage defenses of a town to dramatic rescues of Tahira’s citizens.
The game’s events are all set during a single night. Completing Tahira takes about 10 hours, providing a near real-time experience.
Echoes of the Astral Empire has painstakingly-detailed hand-drawn animations made with a technique called rotoscoping. The environments and music were inspired by Whale Hammer Games’ real-world travels across the Middle East and Central Asia, where many of the instruments used in the soundtrack were purchased.
1. Deep tactical turn-based gameplay across a variety of massive environments
2. Four difficulty levels, to accommodate diehard strategists and those just in search of an engaging story
3. Diverse personalities and abilities among Tahira’s band of followers
4. Vivid locales resembling American comic book styles from the 90’s mixed with the aesthetic of Studio Ghibli’s Princess Mononoke and Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind
5. Intriguing moments of exploration and interaction with party members between battles
“With the fate of her people in her hands, Tahira must come to terms with the responsibility of her birthright and find the strength within herself to lead her people to safety,” said Peter Castle, lead writer, Whale Hammer Games. “Tahira is an epic turn-based tactics homage to the games we grew up playing that puts you in the shoes of a people who have had their home taken from them.”